The Maoling Mausoleum is grand in scale, and it is the biggest mausoleum among the imperial mausoleums of the Western Han Dynasty. Around the Maoling Mausoleum scatter the satellite tombs of the emperor's concubines, maids-in-waiting, ministers and royal relatives. There are still more than 20 tombs extant, including the tombs of Wei Qing, Huo Guang, Huo Qubing and Jin Ribei. Many cultural relics were found in this area, such as the fancy black jade knocker-holder with patters of animals, the steel rhinoceros wine vessel with pattern of clouds, and large airbricks and tiles carved with characters, patterns of red sparrow, dragon, and geometrical design. Now hundreds of the unearthed cultural relics found in the mausoleum are on display in the Maoling Mausoleum Museum.
The Maoling Mausoleum was the tomb of Emperor Wudi in the Western Han Dynasty (206BC-8AD). Emperor Wudi (156-87BC) of the Han Dynasty, named Liu Che, was the son of Emperor Jingdi. During the 54 years of his reign, he greatly expanded the territory. As an emperor with great achievements in Chinese history, he governed the nation smoothly and reinforced his power. In the second year of his reign, Emperor Wudi began to build the Maoling Mausoleum, which took 53 years to finish.
The mausoleum is square and consists of the inner and outer city, with bounding wall around it. The rampart is 431 meters long from the east to the west, and 415m from the south to the north. The wall base is 5.8m wide; the gates are situated in the middle of the four walls. The cover tumulus is 46.5m high, 231m long from the east to the west, and 234m long from the south to the north. According to the historical record, the funeral objects were quite abundant, including gold and silver, birds and beasts, fish and turtles, cattle, horse, tiger, leopard, etc. There were altogether 290 kinds of animals in the mausoleum. Some maids-in-waiting were also put in the mausoleum. Besides, the jade box, jade crutch and a gold box full of 30 volumes of classics that Emperor Wudi had read were buried together with them. When Emperor Wudi was buried, the funerary objects had already chocked up the space of the coffin chamber, leaving no room for any other stuff.